Capricorn One is everything I love about seventies movies. Great story, real feel acting, that sunny southwest gritty look… and plane chases! (Car chases are so boring yet so ubiquitous, but who can say with an honest heart they don’t appreciate a good plane chase in a film?) Characters that are moving and funny at the same time. Real human stories for real humans. Not a bit of CGI to gunk up the screen and distract from the drama.
A mark of the talent that went in to this film, and those of its ilk, is that you get to know the characters, and soon in. They become your friends when you meet them, as opposed to the random, interchangeable automatons that populate so many modern movies. [A quick aside: CHAPPiE, although in a technical sense a literal automaton, is one of the most memorable and likeable of recent film characters – go see it if you haven’t already.] Telly Savalas as Albain, a gritty crop duster for hire, is particularly entertaining. (Admittedly O.J. Simpson is a bit of a distraction at this point but what can you do?)
As for the plot, some minor holes here and there not withstanding (mostly minor blemishes which do not take away from the main attraction), what better story can be told than the greatest lie ever? If anything, this film is sorely understated in that the material that constitutes the main draw in this film is worthy of bigger and bolder settings, but then the charm that I’ve been going on about might possibly be lost in the epicness of the re-imaging.
And then there’s the whole “probably based on a true story” bit… Loony, right? 😉